Protein Package How to start and ecommerce business on Shopify

How to Start an Ecommerce Business on Shopify

Hey Charle readers! I’m George Greenhill, the Founder of Protein Package. Bringing you a guest feature article on how to start an ecommerce business on Shopify.

I started Protein Package from home aged 17 whilst still at school in Wolverhampton, UK. Protein Package is a Shopify online store which reinvents the traditional ‘pick and mix’ for the health-conscious snackers of today. We’re an eCommerce business that allows you to mix and match your favorite guilt-free snacks and nutritional supplements.

Now, aged 21, and having run the business for 4 years, we’re well on our way to becoming one of the bigger players in the health foods and supplement industry. We currently offer an unrivaled choice of quality brands at the best prices when you mix and match and the business is growing faster than ever before with more people looking to shop online. For the past four consecutive years, we've experienced over 400% year-over-year (YoY) growth allowing us to just push over the £1million mark in annual turnover.

This article goes through everything I learned on how to start an ecommerce business on Shopify, to give advice on startup tips as well as help you avoid making some easy to make mistakes along the process.

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How to get your ecommerce business started on Shopify

Shopify is a complete eCommerce platform that lets you start, grow, and manage your online business wherever you are in the world. It carries a monthly subscription of around $79. For this price, you’re able to build a website, accept payments and get access to a high-quality backend system to fulfill orders, create customer accounts, and upload products for sale. Shopify has a huge community of experts and developers that you can integrate with through applications to add complex features and web designs to your pages that could only be achieved by a professional coder.

Our website was built on the platform Shopify and I’d genuinely recommend it to anyone who’s looking to start their own ecommerce business that requires taking payments through a checkout. They’re currently dominating the industry and have exclusive integrations with Instagram, TikTok and YouTube so you can turn your organic social media following into paying customers.

How to scale your Shopify business

One of the most difficult things to master when learning how to start an ecommerce business on Shopify is the inventory management and fulfilment, even though it seems like it should be one of the most simple.

I believe that even when you’re a small business, it’s important to ensure your fulfilment and stock management system is easily scaleable if you need it to be. As an example, if you’re looking to purchase inventory shelving, pick one which you can easily extend or add to down the line. I learnt these problems the hard way by having to purchase completely new systems so we could expand them as we grew.

Apps and features to integrate into your new Shopify store

Through the process of learning how to start an ecommerce business on Shopify, I would highly recommend is Pricsync. It takes a long time to get set up but once it is, it’s one of the most useful data-driven software I’ve seen. Online giants like Amazon adjust their prices constantly to be the most competitive and maximize profits, so why shouldn’t small businesses do the same? That’s exactly what the awesome team has built for you at Prisync.

The basic premise is that it pulls your products from Shopify and you add the competitor's URL links of product pages they also stock. The software analyzes your price against every competitor and then based on your cost price, it suggests the optimal sale price equilibrium between sales quantity and profitability. You can take this one step further by allowing the algorithm to manually update prices for you at multiple intervals throughout the day just like all the online giants do with hyper-competitive ranges like protein bars.

Another great tool I've found when learning how to start an ecommerce business on Shopify is Pushowl. This is a web push notifications system that allows you to send notifications to customers' laptops and phones like you get from apps such as Facebook. After a customer signs up, you’re able to quickly send restock notifications, updates and promote recent blog posts without needing to build time-consuming emails.

Simply add an image, a short description, hit send, and boom, it’s instant traffic to your website. With everyone carrying mobile devices, you can easily target them whilst away from their home computers.

In 2020, halfway through getting to grips on how to start an ecommerce business on Shopify, I discovered Ahrefs through their YouTube tutorials and began to use their premium software service that’s rated the best in class with SEMRush as a toolset for backlink and technical SEO analysis.

The software includes a keyword explorer, content viewer, rank tracker, and website audits so that we could target search phrases and build links to pages to improve our search visibility on a platform that gets around 5 billion organic searches per day.

Managing logistics for your Shopify store

Over the years of learning how to start an ecommerce business on Shopify, Protein Package now employs four full-time members of staff excluding myself and we have several part-time employees who help us out during busy periods such as Black Friday and the January return to the gym. One member of staff helps me with marketing, the website, and SEO whilst the other two employees focus on the packaging and distribution side of things. Part-time staff also assist with packaging and logistics too when they're at work through high sales periods.

Carrying out Marketing and SEO

Email is still the bread and butter for marketing. Recent reports show that ‘email generates $42 for every $1 spent, which is an astounding 4,200% ROI, making it one of the most effective options available’ (Litmus, 2021).

For our emails, we use Klaviyo which has a direct integration with Shopify to automatically pull in all of our products. We’ve created plenty of different templates and presets in the software to speed up the process of building the marketing from the ground up which otherwise takes up a lot of time from your day.

How to track your Shopify store's KPI's

A powerful tool that has helped me through my journey of learning how to start an ecommerce business on Shopify is the in-built analytical tools within the Shopify platform to track, total orders, returning customer rates, online store sessions to see how they change over time andallowing areas of improvements and areas that need working on. This data greatly helps in the process of making informed decisions for your ecommerce business going forward.

How to prevent mistakes when starting an ecommerce business on Shopify

Another thing I love that I've learned during my journey of how to start an ecommerce business on Shopify is the community that they’ve created. Everyone is happy to help each other succeed, if you’re stuck on something, simply make a post in the community and almost every time, you’ll get an expert in that field happy to help you with your query or problems without requesting financial compensation in return.

Another thing I love about Shopify is the community that they’ve created. Everyone is happy to help each other succeed, if you’re stuck on something, simply make a post in the community and almost every time, you’ll get an expert in that field happy to help you with your query or problems without requesting financial compensation in return.

If there are some really complex problems you’re not able to figure out for yourself, Shopify even has an app marketplace where you can purchase website plug-ins for automated discount systems, SEO enhancements and pop-out newsfeeds to promote newly released ranges.

Need help starting your ecommerce business on Shopify? We are experts with Shopify developers at hand to help get your Shopify business up and running every step of the way. Get in touch!

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